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Man committed for '05 slaying

By COLLEEN JENKINS
Published July 14, 2006


TAMPA - Raul Hankilevitz told investigators he stabbed his girlfriend in certain areas of her body so she would not suffer, court records show.

Amy Montgomery, 19, died Jan. 23, 2005, from stab wounds that left her blue jacket and blue shirt soaked with blood inside her boyfriend's first-floor apartment at Camden Street in Tampa.

But because multiple experts said Hankilevitz was in a schizophrenic rage at the time of the killing, a judge on Thursday found him not guilty of first-degree murder by reason of insanity. To make sure he doesn't hurt anyone else, Circuit Judge Daniel Sleet ordered the Tampa man be held indefinitely at a highly secure state mental hospital.

State prosecutors and Charles Traina, Hankilevitz's attorney, agreed that long-term psychiatric treatment was the only option for Hankilevitz. Assistant State Attorney Scott Harmon said the 30-year-old man suffered from hallucinations. One expert, Dr. Wade Myers of the University of South Florida, said in court records that Hankilevitz "is prone to unpredictable violent outbursts of an extreme nature."

Myers said that was demonstrated the morning Montgomery came to visit Hankilevitz at the apartment he shared with his mother and brother. They had been dating about six months. Montgomery was a former foster child whose foster parents were unable to adopt her because of her mood swings, according to court records.

Hankilevitz was a telemarketer with a Florida arrest record dating back to 1994. He had served probation for crimes including burglary and larceny, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

About 10:30 a.m., Hankilevitz asked Montgomery to go into the bathroom and close the door. There, he stabbed her with a butterfly knife, ignoring her pleas for him to stop, records show. His mother and brother heard screaming from the bathroom and pried open the door. Montgomery was bleeding from the neck, upper torso, left leg and back. The brother called 911.

During Montgomery's autopsy, a medical examiner noted the heart and rose tattoo on the small of her back. The name "Raul" was painted across it.

"It's kind of a sad situation," Harmon said. "She had her own mental health issues."

Hankilevitz will be examined every six months by mental health experts at a state hospital. If his mental illness is brought under control, it's possible he could get out in the distant future.

But Harmon said that was unlikely.

"I've never seen anyone get released from the state hospital in this kind of situation," he said.

Colleen Jenkins can be reached at 813 226-3337 or cjenkins@sptimes.com.

[Last modified July 14, 2006, 05:53:41]


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